The currently accepted practice of using inconsistent representations of creep and rupture behaviors in the prediction of creep-fatigue life is shown to introduce a factor of safety beyond that specified in current ASME Code design rules for 304 stainless steel Class 1 nuclear components. Accurate predictions of creep-fatigue life for uniaxial tests on a given heat of material are obtained by using creep and rupture properties for that same heat of material. The use of a consistent representation of creep and rupture properties for a minimum strength heat is also shown to provide reasonable predictions. The viability of using consistent properties (either actual or those of a minimum strength heat) to predict creep-fatigue life thus identifies significant design uses for the results of characterization tests and improved creep and rupture correlations.

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